This community lies south of the Queensway/417 between the Rideau River and the Rideau Canal and on one axis straddles the north-south Main Street, and just south of the Queensway straddles east-west Lees Avenue. The area is home to Algonquin College's Rideau Campus, and St Paul University. To the southwest of this community is Old Ottawa South (and the campus of Carleton University)
Originally, the area was an industrial zone beside the train tracks (today, you just see the VIA Station across the Rideau River). In the 1950s, the tracks were removed to build the Queensway/417. The area began to convert to residential uses, and large high rises were built along Lees Avenue. Recently, the Lees Transitway Station provided excellent access to downtown
As of the 2006 census, Ottawa East had 4,878 residents
In terms of knowledge of official languages, 56% of Ottawa East residents reported that they could speak or understand English only, compared to the Ottawa average of 60%; 2.1% reported that they could speak or understand French only; 41% reported that they could speak or understand both English and French (higher than the Ottawa average of 37%); and less than 1% reported that they knew neither.
Housing here consists mainly of single family homes built in the early 1900s. As well, several large rental apartment buildings at low to moderate levels were built that are popular with new immigrants, students and young professionals.
Ottawa East is a neighbourhood in which 23.4% of homes were built before 1946, 10% were built between 1946 and 1961, and another 8.2% were built between 1961 and 1970. The rate of development has since been steady; 17.4% were built between 1971 and 1980, 23% were built between 1981 and 1990, and 17% were built between 1991 and 2006.
By 2006, Ottawa East had 2,349 dwellings: 13.75% were single detached, 7% are semi-detached, 13.5% are row houses, 52.6% were apartments with 5 or more stories, 10% were apartments with fewer than 5 stories, and 3.1% were duplexes. Most residents (65.6%) rented their homes and 34% were home owners.
There is shopping along the Bank Street retail corridor and nearby at Billings Bridge Shopping Centre
Windsor Park has an outdoor pool and several tennis courts, and nearby Brewer Park has a nice pond and several ball diamonds. There is access to the recreational pathways along the Rideau River and the Rideau Canal (on the opposite bank, but accessed via several bridges), with ready access to Down's Lake, the Rideau Canal Skateway, and Mooney's Bay.